What could a Colorado Springs lawyer buy for 82 bucks?
Let’s see… We could eat about 70 or so items from a fast food dollar menu? (Not all at once!)
Gumball machines still cost 25 cents, right? We could buy 320 gumballs for that price. Don’t worry, we’ll share.
An online store claims we could keep our hair soft and our skin youthful with the 4 lbs. of Moroccan Argan Oil they’ll send us for $82.
Or the Colorado Springs Police could hand me an $82 ticket because my kid wasn’t buckled in while riding in the car.
You don’t have to be a lawyer to know that’s wasteful! It’s wasteful not just because $82 is a lot of cash these days, but primarily because car accidents are the #1 killer of children ages 3 to 14. Who wouldn’t buckle them in for that reason alone? When they are buckled in, kids between the ages of 4 and 7 are 45% less likely to be injured in an accident. That’s the age group who lawmakers hope will benefit the most from the Colorado Child Passenger Safety Law.
It’s a given that infants travel in car seats. Mom and dad can’t leave a hospital in Colorado Springs, San Diego, New York City or anywhere else without one. But many parents think once their kid reaches toddler age, he or she has outgrown the need for a car seat.
The reality is once a child has grown beyond the manufacturer’s height and weight recommendations of their car seat, he or she graduates to a booster seat. It’s all based on a child’s size rather than age. Manufacturer installed seat belts are designed to protect an adult who is about 5’9″. That’s the average height of an American male. Because of that standard, car accident safety research has determined that the protective value of factory-installed seat belts is lost on people 4’9″ and shorter. In fact, in an accident, a seat belt can cause more harm than good to a kid who’s below that cutoff. Accidents involving children who were hurt because of ill-fitting seat belts are some of the most emotionally trying cases a Colorado Springs lawyer ever has to settle.
Drivers in Colorado had a one-year grace period to get used to the Child Passenger Safety Law, but on Aug. 1, Colorado Springs Police started handing out tickets and fines to all drivers who are pulled over for having an improperly secured child in their car. The fine is $82 per child, per violation.
Don’t be caught unprepared. If you still need help deciding how best to buckle in your child, visit the American Academy of Pediatrics. Their Car Safety Seat Guide for Families, 2011, provides all the standards for when to use infant car seats, toddler car seats, booster seats and seat belts. Then, visit the Colorado Department of Transportation to locate a car seat fit station near you. Take advantage of the trained technicians who will check your safety seat, make sure it’s installed properly and that it is appropriate for your child — all for free! Some fit stations may also be able to provide car seats at a reduced price for parents who are facing financial hardship. Tell them you were sent by your favorite Colorado Springs lawyer!